Israeli official: Iran must feel threatened (JERUSALEM POST) By HERB KEINON, LAHAV HARKOV 06/07/12)
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With the world powers set to meet Iran for another round of talks in
Moscow in less than two weeks, Israeli officials said on Wednesday it
was critical for the world to “upgrade the threat perception inside
“Only if the Iranian regime believes the international community is
determined that one way or another they won’t be allowed to develop
nuclear weapons will the international pressure have a chance of
succeeding,” one official said.
The international community has for some time declared that “all
options are on the table” he said. “Now they must say it more
The official said enhancing the threat perception was the third prong
in a threepronged strategy to get Iran to halt its nuclear program
that must also include the continuation and stiffening of economic
sanctions, and an “upgrade” by the international community of its
demands on Iran.
In recent days Jerusalem has stepped up its criticism of the
negotiation stance taken by the world powers – the US, China, Russia,
France, Britain and German – toward Iran. Prime Minister Binyamin
Netanyahu said in an interview with the German Bild daily published
Wednesday that the world powers known as the P5+1 had set the bar far
“The Iranians were only asked to stop 20 percent enrichment of
That doesn’t stop their nuclear program in any way.
It actually allows them to continue their nuclear program,” Netanyahu
One official said that while in previous rounds of talks the
international community had demanded an end to all uranium
enrichment, now the demand was only to halt enrichment to 20%.
The demands on Iran have actually been lowered, the official said.
Iran, meanwhile, questioned the world powers’ readiness for
negotiations , accusing the International Atomic Energy Agency of
behaving like a Westernmanipulated intelligence agency, keeping up
its sparring ahead of talks in Moscow.
Iranian media said Tehran had written twice to the P5+1 seeking
preparatory meetings before the talks due on June 18, but had yet to
“The other side’s delay in meeting deputies and experts throws doubt
and ambiguity on their readiness for successful talks,” Iran’s chief
negotiator Saeed Jalili said in a letter to EU foreign policy chief
Catherine Ashton, according to the IRNA news agency. Ashton is
handling contacts with Iran on behalf of the six powers.
Diplomats say Iran may offer the IAEA increased cooperation in
separate talks on Friday as a bargaining chip in the discussions in
Moscow with the P5+1 later this month.
But Iran’s IAEA Ambassador Ali Asghar Soltanieh showed little
appetite for making concessions, telling reporters in Vienna where he
is attending the IAEA’s board of governors meeting, “Unfortunately
the agency, which is supposed to be an international technical
organization, is somehow playing the role of an intelligence agency.”
Full transparency and cooperation with the IAEA is one of the
elements the world powers are seeking from Iran.
Israel has said that the world should be asking for an end to all
uranium enrichment, the transfer of all enriched uranium out of the
country, and the closing of the underground facility at Qom.
Israel’s representative at the IAEA Board of Governors meeting, Ehud
Azoulay, said Tehran was proceeding at an “accelerated path towards
acquiring nuclear weapons capability.” He said Iran was engaged in
nuclear “deception, defiance and concealment.
Foreign Minister Avigdor Liberman expanded on this theme at the
Knesset Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee on Wednesday, saying it
was “obvious to all that Iran is trying to hide proof of its nuclear
program, but we can see proof in satellite photos.”
According to Liberman, Iran is prepared to pay a price for nuclear
weapons, and sanctions alone will not stop their aspirations.
The foreign minister also slammed former security officials who have
said that an attack on Iran will not be effective, saying that
their “hyperactive chatter” is damaging and moves international
attention to Israel, instead of Iran.
Liberman added that the Iranians “try to hurt our representatives
around the world every single day” He also pointed out that Iran is
helping Syrian President Bashar Assad stay in power. “Assad is
stronger than what [IDF] intelligence has been saying,” he stated.
“At the same time, I don’t think there is a chance he will stay in
power.” Reuters contributed to this report. (© 1995-2011, The
Jerusalem Post 06/07/12)
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